Tag Archives: charles loudon

2010 in Review


The FCR continues to expand its readership and the grade of excellence of its published poets and writers. We have been faithful to our mission in providing our readers with a mixture of poetic voices under the guidance of our Poetry Editor, Diane Sahms-Guarnieri.  In 2010, we published three editions and remain committed to releasing three editions a year.  Our expanded fiction section has been well received and we will continue to expand under the guidance of our Fiction Editor, O.L. Barnes. 

The FCR focuses on the literary promotion of our published poets and writers.  Our Web Designer, SR Moser, has developed a sleek format to facilitate this endeavor by taking our readers straight to our writers’ work, without the bells and whistles that distract from the literary content.   January 2011 will mark the release of our ninth edition. 

This is the third year that The FCR has nominated poets/writers for The Pushcart.  We hope to crack this ceiling with an award sometime in the future. In addition, we are researching other avenues to promote the poets and writers that we publish. This year has marked a change in our submission policy.  Poets and writers can query The FCR and request an invitation to submit.  We look forward to 2011.

THE FOX CHASE READING SERIES includes the following venues:

  1. Featured Poets Series: This series has completed its third season at 3 Sisters Corner Café, 7950 Oxford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA. This intimate cafe has a great vibe.  Our two featured poets per month came from our city and from across the United States. The featured poets are follwed by an open mic.  The café changed ownership during 2010; however, the new owners remain committed to the reading series. So if you can, come out and support the venue and the poets who read here.
  2. 2nd Tuesdays Poetry Open Mic: This series entered its second season in 2010. Tough economic times forced the closing of our venue and after finding a temporary home, we decided to go on hiatus in the spring of 2010. We are pleased to announce that in December of 2010, this popular series returned to The Hop Angel Brauhaus, 7980 Oxford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA. The quality of established and emerging poets who read in this series is simply amazing. Depending on the crowd size, each poet is permitted ten minutes to read their poetry.  We thank The Hop Angel for bringing us back onboard and for their commitment to the arts in Fox Chase.  The Brauhaus has a great menu and drink selection. We are looking forward to an outstanding season in 2011.
  3. Poets in the Park: 2010 marked our first outdoor poetry reading in Lions Park, 7900 Oxford Avenue, Philadelphia, PA.  The reading was held July 31st , a warm summer evening. The five poets who read provided this well attended event with excellent poetry.   Special thanks to The Northeast Lions and The Rockledge/Fox Chase Business Association who maintain this beautiful park in the heart of Fox Chase.  Poets in the Park will return on July 16, 2011.  Six poets will read from the gazebo in the park.
  4. Poets on the Porch: 2010 also marked our first reading on the porch of The Historic Ryerss Museum and Library, 7370 Central Avenue, Philadelphia, PA.   The reading was held on August 20th with an electric atmosphere. The seven poets who read were well received and a great time was had by all. Special thanks to the staff of Ryerss Museum and Library for the use of their beautiful outdoor facility. Poets on the Porch will return on August 20, 2011, with seven poets reading on the porch.

You can find out who is reading at our venues by visiting the ninth edition of The Fox Chase Review that will be released in January 2011 and by visiting our blog at this link: Fox Chase Reading Series 2011 Schedule


The Fox Chase Reading Series Blog was originally created to compliment The Fox Chase Review and The Fox Chase Reading Series. In 2010 we were able to expand to book reviews by our staff, Diane Sahms- Guarnieri, Rodger Lowenthal, Alfred Hayes and Charles Loudon. In addition, we promote books that come to our attention by poets/writers who are published in FCR and highlight literary links of interest.  2010 marked the departure of Charles Loudon who moved on to other adventures.  If you have a review you believe the FCRS blog would have an interest in please submit it to foxchasereadingseries@yahoo.com for consideration.


g emil reutter had his eighth release, Carvings, published in November 2010 and we have created a blog in support of the release. For information on Carvings please visit: http://gereutter.wordpress.com/

Diane Sahms-Guarnieri , our poetry editor, will release Images of Being, a full-length poetry collection in October 2011. We will keep you updated.

SR Moser continues to write, garden in the pacific northwest while exploring her art of photography.

Rodger Lowenthal continues to publish book reviews and poetry in the small press. Rodger is looking forward to finding a home for his manuscript in 2011.

Alfred Hayes has fled the winter months in Burholme and is traveling throughout the southwest on his Harley, where he will visit with Charles Loudon in New Mexico. We look forward to his return, unless Charles keeps him out west!


Ron Silliman has named us The Fox Chase Collective. Truly, that is what we are. A collective dedicated to the promotion of the written word on- line and the spoken word in performance.  The road has been bumpy and full of surprises. We wish the venues that support our reading series great success in 2011.  We hope our readers of The Fox Chase Review continue to enjoy the poets and writers that we bring to them.   Special thanks to Frank Wilson – The Books Inq. Blog; Ron Silliman; Anthony Buccino – The New Jersey Poetry Blog;  Nathalie Anderson –promoter of  literary events in Southeastern Pennsylvania;  local newspapers and various websites for including a number of FCR and  FCRS events on their blogs and announcements.

We have grown over the last three years and look forward to continued growth in 2011. 

The Fox Chase Collective 

All the best to Charles

Charles Loudon, one of our book reviewers has moved on. Charles, 69, has married his new love, Lynne and they have moved to New Mexico. Charles and Lynne plan to become active in the artist community in their new home. We thank Charles for his contributions to The Fox Chase Review and his support to us in promoting poets and poetry.  All the best to Charles and Lynne on their new adventure!

WHITE APPLES and the TASTE of STONE, Selected Poems 1946-2006 by Donald Hall

Charles Loudon*- The Fox Chase Review


     Donald Hall brings us on a journey through his sixty years of poetry, of writing, of selecting poems to share with us, of great joy and great loss. Hall is a lover of the sound of words, a poet who poets enjoy as well as non-poets such as me. At this last stage in his life, Hall continues to write and share his poetry at conferences, he has survived cancer and the loss of the beautiful poet Jane Kenyon his wife 20 years his junior. Like Kunitz, Hall will contribute to the art of poetry until he can speak no more, and for generations after he departs this place.

     Hall writes of his sense of place and the people around him. Community, family, ancestors, children and Jane all have prominence in his poetry. He draws us into his life, leaving us more appreciative of ours. We sometimes take many things for granted, Hall reminds us, we should treasure every minute. 

The sense of loss from Ardor:

After she died I screamed/ upsetting the depressed dog/ Now I no longer/ address the wall covered/ with many photographs/ nor call her “you”/ in a poem. She recedes/ into the granite museum/ of JANE KENYON 1947-1995.


Hours are slow and weeks/ rapid in their vacancy/ Each day lapses as I recite/ my complaints. Lust is grief/ that has turned over in bed/ to look the other way.  


From The Third Inning

9. The leg is the dancer and the mouth/ the sculptor. The tongue models vowels/ or chisels consonants. Pause, pitch, pace/ length, and volume patine a surface/ of shapes that the mouth closes over/ Behind our listening lips, working/ the throats silent machine, one muscle/ shuts on/off/on/off: the motionless/ leg of the word that leaps in the world.


From Stone Walls

In October the leaves turn/ on low hills in the middle distance, like heather, like tweed/ Like tweed woven from heather and gorse/ purples, greens, reds, grays, oranges, weaving together/ this joyful fabric/ and I walk in the afternoon sun, kicking the leaves.


Hall’s narrative poems wrap you in the fabric of his life, always calling to you to turn the page and read more. Hall is a national treasure, and for every second he presses on, writing of what he knows, what he is, we are better for it.


WHITE APPLES and the TASTE of Stone, Selected Poems 1946-2006 can be found here:

White Apples and the Taste of Stone: Selected Poems 1946-2006 

*Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks with. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library. This is the last in a series of reviews Mr. Loudon is writing for National Poetry Month.

** some text does not appear as in the collection due to format problems.

Collected Poems 1953-1993 by John Updike

Charles Loudon* – The Fox Chase Review.

So it begins, “The idea of verse, of poetry, has always, during forty years spent working primarily in prose, stood at my elbow as a standing invitation to the highest kind of verbal exercise-the most satisfying, the most archaic, the most elusive of critical control. In hotel rooms and airplanes, on beaches and Sundays, at junctures of personal happiness or its opposite, poetry has comforted me with its hope of permanence, it packaging of flux” – John Updike


This beautifully presented collection of Updike’s poetry brings us through the early years and the last years. Updike brings us into daily life, no event to small or large to write about. He is coy, lyrical exhibiting a self depreciating humor and wit.

 In the poem, From Meditation on a News Item, Updike is inspired by a photograph of Castro and Hemingway at the first Hemingway Fishing Tournament in Cuba. He notes the profiles of the two men, that the photograph is cropped and that the tournament is akin to a woodcut of Shakespeare presenting a blue ribbon to Queen Elizabeth for Best Cake Baked. A special note for Hemingway:

How did it happen? Did he/ convulsively departing from the exhausting regimen-the rising at 6 a.m. to sharpen twelve pencils/ with which to cut, as he stands at his bookcase/ 269 or 313 or 451 more words into the paper/ that will compose one of  those many rumored books/ that somehow never appear- did he abruptly exclaim, “I have a fishing tourney!”


In Plow Cemetery, Updike reflects on his roots in Pennsylvania and his mothers’ purchase of a plot for him to return home when the time came: 

“Plow Cemetery, downhill from the church/ Here rest my maternal forebears underneath/ erect or slightly tipping slender stones/ the earliest inscribed Hier rube, then/with arcs of sentimental English set/ afloat above the still-Germanic names/ in round relief the regional soft rock/ releases to the air slow grain by grain/ until the dates that framed a brisk existence/ spent stamping amid animals and weather/ are weathered into timelessness


“New mounds weep pink in the rain/ Live moles hump up the porous, grassy ground/ Traffic along Route 10 is quieter now/ the Interstate exists in parallel, forming a fourlane S in the middle view/ that wasn’t there before, this side the smudge/ red Reading makes between its blue-brown hills.”


From Lament, for Cocoa 

“ The scum has come/ My coca’s cold/ The cup is numb/ And I grow old.

It seems an age/ Since from the pot/ It bubbled, beige/ And burning hot-

Too hot to be/ Too quickly quaffed/ Accordingly/ I felt a draft

And in it placed/ The boiling brew/ And took a taste/ Of toast or two.

Alas, time flies/ And minutes chill/ My coca lies/ Dull brown and still.

How wearisome! In likelihood/ The scum, once come, Is come for good.”


The beauty of Updike and his poetry is that he tackles serious subject matter and never hesitates to delve into what some may say is trivial. Bold for a poet in any time or school of poetry. Quite simply The Collected Poems 1953-1993 by John Updike is an excellent read and never pretentious. I am glad that the idea of verse, of poetry always stood next to his elbow with a standing invitation.


You can find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Collected-Poems-1953-1993-John-Updike/dp/0679762043


 *Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks with. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library. This is the second in a series of reviews Mr. Loudon is writing for National Poetry Month.

** some text does not appear as in the collection due to format problems.

Passing Through- The Later Poems by Stanley Kunitz

Charles Loudon** – The Fox Chase Review 

           I had the opportunity this past week to revisit Passing Through – The Later Poems by Stanley Kunitz.  He leads us into this collection with Instead of a Forward with a commentary on twentieth century poetry that still applies today:

“It disturbs me that twentieth century American poets seem largely reconciled to being relegated to the classroom—practically the only habitat in which most of us are conditioned to feel secure. It would be healthier if we could locate ourselves in the thick of life, at every intersection where values and meanings cross, caught in the dangerous traffic between self and universe.”

            Kunitz the ultimate academic recognized the need to inject energy into poetry then as today, to bring poetry out of the secure classroom environment to, “the dangerous traffic between self and universe”. 

From River Road *:

That year of the cloud, when my marriage failed,/ I slept in a chair, by the flagstone hearth,/ fighting my sleep,/ and one night saw a Hessian Solider/ stand at attention there in full/ regalia, till his head broke into flames. My only other callers were the FBI/ sent to investigate me as a Russian spy/ by patriotic neighbors on the river road;/ and flying squirrels parachuting from the elms/ who squeaked in rodent heat between the walls/ and upstairs rumbled at their nutty games.  

From The Knot:

I’ve tried to seal it in,/ that cross-grained knot/ on the opposite wall,/ scored in the lintel of my door,/ but it keeps bleeding through./ into the world we share. Mornings when I wake,/ curled in my web,/ I hear it come/ with a rush of resin/ out of the trauma of its lopping off. 

            Kunitz the master symbolist draws the reader into his poetry permitting the reader the opportunity to live and breathe the poems as Kunitz did when crafting them. 

From The Lincoln Relics:

Cold-eyed, in Naples once,/ while the congregation swooned,/ I watched the liquefaction/ of a vial of precious blood,/ and wondered only/ how the trick was done. Saint’s bone are only bones/ to me, but here,/ where the stage is set/ without a trace of gore,/ these relics on display–/ watchfob and ivory pocket knife, / a handkerchief of Irish linen,/ a button severed from his sleeve– 

Through the years, Stanely Kunitz has remained one of my favorite poets. I encourage lovers of poetry and poets to read Kunitz’s work. There is much to be learned, much to be enjoyed. Kunitz passed away at the age of 100 in 2006. His life spanned two centuries, influencing many poets of the last century and lives on to influence poets of the new century. 

Passing Through- The Later Poems by Stanley Kunitz can be found at this link:

Passing Through: The Later Poems, New and Selected by Stanley Kunitz

*River Road is located in Bucks County. The area Kunitz writes of is located between Washington Crossing State Park and New Hope Pa.

 **Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks with. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library

Clear Moon, Frost by Amy Small McKinney

Charles Louden* – The Fox Chase Review 

      Amy Small-McKinney writes from a humble yet intense place turning phrases and the constant drumbeat of metaphors. Small-McKinney celebrates some simple things in life: 

From The Meaning of Life

“I am happy when I find the juicy orange/ I am happy when the sofa is on sale/ happiest when I have not lost my job.” 

From Dillsburg, PA       

“The frogs have begun whistling/ Black Walnut trees, their green globes/ the size of tennis balls, have not begun to shed/ or to make their mess, though they secret walnuts inside.” 

       Small-McKinney brings us back to stark reality: 

From Found

“my house is gray.  All color gone/ I lift up the light. It gathers in my hands” 

From White Poem

“I walked scattered into the worm hand of myself/ I was nothing, I swear only scattered/ ashes before ashes, before the earth/ that refused to receive me” 

Clear Moon, Frost by Amy Small McKinney is available from Finishing Line Press at this link: www.finishinglinepress.com 

You can read the poetry of Amy Small McKinney in The Fox Chase Review at this link:


Amy Small McKinney will read her poetry with Leonard Gontarek at The Fox Chase Reading Series, “Featured Poets Reading”, at 3 Sisters Corner Café in Fox Chase on April 24th @2pm. 

* Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks with. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library.

Finding the Words by Dan Maguire

Charles Loudon* – The Fox Chase Review 

           Dan Maguire is a master craftsman with words. His voice is quiet yet brutally honest in this collection of 27 poems presented by Plan B Press. There is loneliness and sense of loss yet Maguire at his core is a romantic.

           From Reprise:

               “Over and over you hear her/ combing the world through her hair, / muttering the long day’s shimmer. / everyone else condemned, subsiding/ separately, in waiting.”

           A beautiful image shadowed by what is to come.

          From Outpost:

               “I blow a smoke ring in the air/ watch it rise, pretending it’s a prayer/ with a chance of answer/ I watch until the moon inhales the smoke, my breath.”

           From Icarus:

               “ You say you love to fly/ Perhaps that’s where you go/ times when I can’t reach you/ times I pray for more and more/ You keep this heavy love of air/ to give you something/ in your strange sad inventory/ that I do not have”

           Finding the Words is a collection that will have you returning to catch the sound, images Maguire’s style lifts from the page time and again.

           Released in 2008, the collection is available from Plan B Press at this link: http://www.planbpress.com/maguirefinding.html

          Maguire will be reading with Lynn Levin on January 30th at The Fox Chase Reading Series, 2pm, at 3 Sisters Corner café.

You can read the poetry of Dan Maguire poetry at The Fox Chase Review by clicking this link:


* Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks with. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library.

street psalms- collected poems by James D. Quinton

Charles Loudon*

The Fox Chase Review 

         James Quinton has been banging around the small press world for over a decade. His poems have been published internationally on a grand scale, similar to the great American Poet A.D. Winans who is 40 years his senior. Realism is the hallmark of this body of work. Quinton has lived life and it is reflected in his poetry, not imagined or written from what may have been, but from living life.

         Quinton writes in “fresh faced and keen” of a young man working in a chain video store who is new on the job, fresh with enthusiasm, marking the transformation and disenchantment at the end of the poem. “… chained to the counter/ watching the hands of the clock/ taunting him as they move/ very, very slowly”.

        From “the darkness creeps in where there was light” – “… numbly staring, waiting for/ something to/  happen, I’m always waiting/ the angels/ know where I live/ but the/ demons know my name”

       In “between the cracks in the floorboards” Quinton reflects on self imposed loneliness – “ideally I want to exist/ between the cracks/in the floorboards/ out of society/ out of circulation/ absorbing solitude/ behind the door/ of a locked room/ an existence enclosed……. People pass/ they don’t know/ I’m here”

       This collection of seventy poems also marks the growth and transformation of Quinton. Written between 2001 and 2007 he brings us through the events of the everyday, but it is not all dreary.

      From “street psalm (version) – “ the search  for an understanding/ is an invite to all…Marvel at the planet we walk/ and the sky we live under… the late night streets/ indeed everywhere/ alive with beauty and wonder…”

       street psalms- collected poems by James D. Quinton, published by Xplosive Books, isbn: 978-1-4452-0685-1 can be purchased at Amazon by using this link:  Street Psalms

* Charles Loudon lives on Cottman Avenue in Philadelphia, he is not sure if he lives in Fox Chase or Burholme depending on who he speaks to. He is frequent visitor to the Ryerss Library.

Charles Loudon reviews Philly Fiction 2

Philly Fiction 2

Publisher: Don Ron Books


ISBN: 978-0-9774772-1-0


Josh Mcllvain

Christopher Munden

Greg November

Tracy Parker 

                This collection, a second in a series of short story anthologies centered in Philadelphia, rises to the standard set by the first Philly Fiction.  A majority of the stories read well including a disturbing piece concerning a guy and his hoagie obsession.  These stories bring the reader on a journey through Philadelphia neighborhoods and the characters who populate them.

              The Summer of Dark Shadows by Liz Kerr reveals in stunning detail how war can disrupt normal family life, cause divisions especially when a sibling is in combat.

               These writers bring us into the stories to witness homelessness and discrimination, complex family relationships and generational lines, mental illness, geographical discrimination and neglect. The volume is a fast read that will keep you turning the pages.

                Philly Fiction 2 lets us know everything is not sunny in Philadelphia yet these writers allow a little sunshine into the caverns, hills and valleys of this city of neighborhoods. It is worth the read and the journey these writers take us on. 

Charles Loudon

The Fox Chase Review

 Publishers note: This review is a first in a possible series of reviews by Charles Loudon and Alfred Hayes that may transition into the regular edition of The Fox Chase Review.